To preserve the world's written heritage of all ages – literary, scientific or other – and keep it accessible to research and use everywhere is one of the core missions of any research library. To realize this, libraries and others are creating surrogates of printed or hand-written items in micro-optic or digital form. In order to preserve as many documents as possible, our limited resources should be spent on reformatting those items that have not been digitized or microfilmed already.
Coordination of digitizing or microfilming activities and easy access to existing service copies of surrogate media help libraries to avoid unnecessary duplication of effort. EROMM, the European Register of Microform and Digital Masters, aims to bring together all information on printed and hand-written items reformatted to surrogate media – digital or microform – in libraries throughout Europe and worldwide.
For this purpose EROMM created the database EROMM Classic and more recently the EROMM Search service, which are both freely available to anyone. With it, EROMM is also supporting researchers and students, who want to identify the location of any item in surrogate form.
EROMM is a consortium of libraries and library networks. The founding agreement dates back to 1994. The first group of four libraries, which had cooperated since 1990 in the second only of European Union library projects, resolved to run the register of preservation surrogates as a permanent service. Since then, EROMM has evolved from a register recording microform masters into a database recording any printed or hand-written item available in surrogate, be it on microfilm or in digital form.
Presently there are 10 EROMM partners representing eleven countries in Europe. We hope to extend the membership to cover libraries from all over Europe.
For more information about the birth, mission, history and other interesting things about EROMM, please refer to the articles below:
Feather, John ; Vitiello, Giuseppe: The European Register of Microform Masters : a new bibliographical tool. In: Journal of Librarianship and Information Science 23 (1991), December, no. 4, p. 177 - 182. – ISSN 0961-0006. – Available online (pay):
Schwartz, Werner: The European Register of Microform Masters (EROMM). In: LIBER Quarterly 5 (1995), p. 103 - 110. – ISSN 1435-5205. – Available online (free):
Schwartz, Werner: EROMM and the Registry of Digital Masters. In: LIBER Quarterly 18 (2008), April, no. 1, p. 49 - 58. – ISSN 1435-5205. – Available online (free):